Women Artists of the North East Library is an artist-led project that brings together donated material, including: books, art, images, oral histories and music, to form a usable resource that contributes to the history of women artists working in the region. The Library was initiated by Holly Argent & Rene McBrearty in 2017 and is currently hosted by The Northern Charter in Newcastle.
Throughout the Great Exhibition of the North 2018 the library will be resident at Workplace Foundation in Gateshead and available to the public as an evolving exhibition, library, and platform for events and discussions. The project aims to use the premise of presenting artists work as an opportunity to explore the act of building such a library; In what ways do artists make work in relation to, or with, other artists? How can a library of women artists associated with a region, exist for a community? How do we find our role models? Can archival strategies contribute to intergenerational conversations and art making?
The project will open with works from Phyllis Christopher, Tess Denman-Cleaver, Kate Liston and Harriet Sutcliffe.
Building on previous public and private events initiated by the library, which include open library days, city walks and a one day residency at BALTIC Library and Archive, the project in Gateshead will, for the first time, include exhibited work by artists at varying points in their careers alongside works by key historical figures.
Throughout the project, artists and the public are invited to nominate Women artists and donate material that they think should be added to the Library.
The Women Artists of the North East Library at Workplace is curated by Holly Argent in conversation with George Vasey, Café Gallery Projects, London and Workplace Foundation, Gateshead.